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Richard W. TeLinde Distinguished Professorship in Gynecological Pathology

TelindeRichardRICHARD W. TELINDE, MD, the third Professor of Gynecology at Johns Hopkins, was born in 1894 in Waupun, Wisconsin. He attended Hope College and the University of Wisconsin, receiving his AB from the latter in 1917. He started medical school at the University of Wisconsin and transferred to the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, where he was elected into Alpha Omega Alpha and received his medical degree in 1920. Dr. TeLinde was an intern in surgery under William Halsted and a resident in gynecology under Thomas Cullen. In 1925, he began a private practice in Baltimore which he maintained until 1972. In 1939, Dr. TeLinde was appointed Chair of the Department of Gynecology, a significant event because Gynecology became a separate department from Surgery. Upon Dr. TeLinde’s retirement as Chair in 1960, Gynecology and Obstetrics became a joint department.

During his tenure, Dr. TeLinde set the tone and created a standard of excellence for an academic department in the specialty of gynecology. He was a superior surgeon and outstanding investigator and teacher. An important part of his legacy was the perpetuation of excellence in gynecology through the training of residents. Eight of his residents became department chairmen at academic institutions and three others became directors of gynecology at large community hospitals. Because Dr. TeLinde believed that an understanding of pathology was essential for the training of a gynecologist, he endowed through his personal philanthropy a Chair in Gynecologic Pathology in the Johns Hopkins Department of Gynecology and Obstetrics.

Dr. TeLinde’s research interests were in the areas of reproductive endocrinology, oncology, urinary incontinence, and endometriosis. In 1944, he and his colleagues, Gerald Galvin, MD and Howard Jones, Jr, MD, launched a series of studies spanning 22 years that ultimately provided convincing evidence that invasive cervical cancer was preceded by a noninvasive precursor—carcinoma in situ. Dr. TeLinde strongly advocated and was one of the pioneers of the approach of combining Pap smears and cervical biopsies for the prevention of cervical cancer.

Dr. TeLinde published over 100 research articles making major contributions to the study of granulosa cell tumors of the ovary. His text on surgery, Operative Gynecology, first published in 1946 and still in print today, is often referred to as “the bible” of gynecology, and has been the premier text in the field of gynecologic surgery for more than 60 years. Dr. TeLinde was highly regarded by colleagues nationwide and was a president of the American Gynecological Society. He performed surgery until he was 72 years old and continued with his private practice for 12 more years. He died in 1989 in Baltimore at the age of 95.